Did you know that there are about 1.8 million wholesale companies across the EU?
Each day, wholesale supplier businesses keep opening their doors. But a lot more close down because they can’t keep up in this competitive market. To run a successful warehouse, have an efficient operation that satisfies your customers.
A distribution centre manager can help maintain the efficient functioning of your warehouse. However, they can’t ensure efficiency with old practices. Below are strategies you can implement to optimise your processes.
Use Technology to Work Smarter
Distribution centre management technologies have advanced over time. But it is up to warehouse managers to implement the use of these technologies.
Optimising new technological systems in distribution centres will help improve agility and accuracy. What’s more, it will also help reduce the workload on your employees.
Sync Up Last-Mile Delivery Using Route Optimisation Software
When it comes to warehouse logistics, enhancing the last-mile delivery process is important. It helps ensure customer satisfaction and loyalty.
As a warehouse manager, you need to know exactly when delivery trucks will arrive. This helps you to schedule timely picking and packing. One way you can synchronise last-mile delivery is through route optimisation software.
With this technology, you can monitor the movements of delivery drivers in real time. Thus, ensure the picking and packing happens just before the delivery truck arrives. This will reduce the time products sit on a loading dock.
Adopt Warehouse Management System
Managing a distribution centre manually can be daunting. There are a lot of moving pieces and several employees you need to manage. And this is where a warehouse management system (WMS) is essential.
The WMS software acts as a central command for modern distribution centre management. It will help you:
- Manage physical inventory
- Identify product locations
- Stay up to date with product expiration dates and refills
WMS allows you to scan barcodes of incoming goods during the receiving process, updating your inventory list on the go. This will help minimise human error and boost accuracy. Additionally, it also offers real-time visibility within your distribution centre. No matter how big it may be.
Organise Your Warehouse
Enhancing your warehouse’s layout can help allow for smooth supply chain operations. You need to map out your distribution centre to create a seamless flow of personnel and products.
Ensure that all slots are well-organised to follow a logical, value-based system. Laying out your distribution centre may take some trial and error. But make sure frequently purchased products are easily accessible.
Additionally, ensure your aisles are spacious to accommodate foot traffic, forklifts, and pallets. Remember organising your warehouse shouldn’t be a one-time thing. It should be an ongoing process that strives to keep relevant products within reach.
Consider Outsourcing Systems or Operations
Does your warehouse face surges in operation?
You should consider hiring third-party fulfilment or partnerships. It can help you handle these surges. Outsourcing can include working with a third party directly or using a SaaS system. It increases your resources, such as equipment and employees.
If you outsource labour, don’t forget to train and orientate them to your facility. Proper induction will help minimise delays caused by new employees.
Additionally, ensure you organize routine meetings with temporary workers. It will help ensure better collaboration and consistency in your distribution centre.
Focus on Transparency and Lean Warehouse Practices
Transparency in your distribution centre requires dedicated data collection and analysis. What’s more, you need continuous improvement across all operations and employees.
Focusing on warehouse transparency can lead to leaner practices and improved inventory control. These lean practices can also have implications on your budgets.
When you set a budget for distribution centre operations, make sure you stick to it. As a manager, ensure that you and your team members understand their roles in staying within budget. Keep track of this information as it will help ensure 100% transparency across your warehousing enterprise.
Ensure Effective Control of Both Inbound and Outbound Freight
When managing a warehouse, ensure you manage outbound and inbound freight efficiently. Make sure each vendor knows their responsibilities as stated by the freight management guide.
Moreover, these vendors need to work with warehouses to optimise your operations. If the vendors don’t meet the guide’s expectations, you have the authority as a warehouse manager to enact penalties against them.
Conduct Regular Warehouse Audits
As a distribution centre manager, warehouse audits are valuable tools for optimising operations. Conducting internal warehouse audits can help you evaluate your staff’s performance. This will help you identify areas of improvement.
You can collect data to track performance metrics such as the precision of inventory counts. These audits will also help you double-check inventory quality. It also helps ensure that safety protocols are being followed.
For maximum efficiency, break up your audits into manageable sections you can perform once a month on rotation. With regular audits, you can save your warehouse business a lot of time and money.
Stay On Board with Your Staff
Even with warehouse automation, don’t forget about your staff. Your distribution centre is only as proficient as your employees are effective at their jobs. This is why you should implement a comprehensive training program for them.
The training should include:
- Warehouse organisation
- Customer service
- Reporting processes
- Maintenance and operation of machinery
- Guidelines for working within your warehouse
Apart from training, employee feedback is also valuable. It’s a good way to get on-the-ground information about your warehouse. Additionally, keep a positive work environment for your staff to ensure your warehouse is running smoothly.
Maximize Efficiency With Your Distribution Center Management
Distribution centre management can be complex. As a warehouse manager, it will take a lot of time and experience to get things right. The aforementioned tips can help you.
At Anis, we’re a reliable distributor of industrial machinery. Contact us today to find a dealer next to you.